Royal Gorge Adventures, Colorado

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The Arkansas River Valley from the Royal Gorge near Canon City west to Salida is ideal for weekend getaways

This corner of Colorado combines spectacular scenery with excellent wineries, Old Town shopping, delightful restaurants and quaint bed and breakfast inns – beginning less than an hour from Colorado Springs.

Royal Gorge , a breathtaking deep canyon carved by the Arkansas river, is waiting for you to explore its splendor. You can do it by train in a comfortable Observation Dome car (with lunch or dinner) -- daily in the summer, weekends only between October and June.

Easy access and wide diversity means the upper Arkansas River has become the number one river in the US for rafting and kayaking – for first timers and families to Class V rapids for the experts. There are half-and full-day trips available through Brown's canyon for folks 8 and older, and through the Gorge for experienced rafters 15 and older.

If you choose not to get wet, or if you go between October and May, you can get a panoramic view of the gorge from the world's highest suspension bridge that hangs more than a thousand feet above the river and spans a quarter-mile across the canyon. For more thrills, there's the world's longest singe-span arial tram and the steepest incline railway on the planet. For more information, click on Royal Gorge Bridge and Park

Or you can experience Royal Gorge via an awesome Helicopter Tour, 719-276-9038, but only from May through September.

There’s plenty of year-around, easy-access fishing on the river from Buena Vista downstream to the Gorge. For expert advice from people who have caught fish in the past week, see Colorado Fly Shops

There’s much more! For weekend getaway ideas about where to stay, eat and shop around Canon City and Royal Gorge, see Canon City Getaways

And farther upstream, there’s still more exiciting lodging, shopping and dining adventures waiting for you in the old western town of Salida Getaways